KAMLOOPS — By now, they’ve all signed their names and submitted their papers. As of 4:00 pm Friday, the candidate list is set for the 2018 Municipal Election, set to take place October 20th.
“You’ve got to have a pretty thick skin to take part in politics at any level, but in local politics, you can get cornered every day,” retired Political Science Professor Ray Pillar explains. “It’s a bold move for anybody.”
The 2018 election campaign will see two vacant council seats around the table, as both Pat Wallace and Tina Lange chose not to seek re-election this time around. That’s a fact Lange thought might draw more names to the ballot.
“Generally if there’s less people [running], it really means people are happy,” Lange says. “I’m surprised there aren’t more with two absolute vacant seats.”
Lange has been on council for the past four terms but made the decision not to run in June. She says any new faces that end up winning a spot around the council table will need to be prepared to commit a significant amount of time to the job.
“It is a big commitment, and it’s not just sitting in meetings,” Lange says. “It’s spending a lot of time reading your agenda, answering emails, talking to people, going to events. It’s a demanding job if you do it right.”
With at least two new city councillors once all the votes have been cast, Pillar says a mix of new and old councillors would be the ideal outcome of the election.
“Hopefully, we’ll get some new faces and keep enough experience there to keep things moving forward,” Pillar says. “It’s important for a city this size to keep progressing, but not try and progress too fast.”
Lange has some advice for any of those new councillors once they’ve been confirmed.
“It’s very hard to shift that big ship that the city is,” Lange says. “It takes time, it takes patience, and there’s only a limited amount that one councillor will ever be able to accomplish.”
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